Is It true that arms and elbows must not touch the ground in prostration?

Details of the Question
Is It true that arms and elbows must not touch the ground in prostration?
The Answer

Dear Brother / Sister,

The position in prostration: “The feet and hands must face the direction of qiblah.“ Seven organs including the nose must touch the ground in prostration. These are the practices of the Prophet; it is sunnah not to put the elbows and the breast on the ground/floor, not to adjoin the arms to the body, and not to shrink and to be straight.”

The Messenger of Allah says; “when one of you prostrates, he must avoid laying his arms on the ground like a dog does; he must adjoin his thighs (Abu Dawud, II, 48).

The feet are kept in a vertical position, the toes touching the ground/floor; and the feet must not be raised from the ground.

The ground where we put our forehead for prostration must not be very soft. If the forehead feels the hardness of the ground although there is a light softness, this prostration is acceptable. Yet, the prostration is not acceptable when it is done on things like wool, cotton straw and snow because the forehead does not feel the hardness of the ground when it is placed on them. What is essential in prostration is as follows: the face must not sink into the ground and the forehead must feel the hardness of the ground.

The place to be prostrated on must not be higher than the level of the knees (approximately 30 cm). The height which is lower than this (30 cm) does not invalidate the prayer. Yet, during  a prayer performed in congregation, one can prostrate on the back of the person in front when it is not possible to prostrate on the floor/ground because of lack of space. This is acceptable if both of them (one prostrating and the other being prostrated on his back) are performing the same prayer at the same time.

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